“In his infamous 1971 opus, Steal This Book, Abbie Hoffman presented his own design for urban living outside (and off of) the system…
The “Me generation” having wreaked its Yuppie havoc on our notions of an acceptable standard of life, we’re obviously going to have to modify our definitions a bit. What with the astronomical cost of everything these days, Abbie’s dumpster-diving just ain’t going to cut it. Face it: Scruffy hippie crash pads are out; Playstations are in. It’s no longer a question of surviving, it’s surviving in style.
We know “off-the-grid urban living” seems a contradiction in terms: “Urban living” has, since ancient Mesopotamia, meant dependence on other people and the government, while “off the grid” refers to those folks who want to live independently from Korporate Amerika, specifically off the municipal power grid. They tend to go in for things like solar panels, composting systems, outhouses, and vegetable gardens. Many do it out of a commitment to living in an ecologically correct manner; others do it because they’re afraid the Zionist Occupation government is going to put microchips in their foreheads. (It’s pretty safe to make fun of the second group: While they’re usually heavily armed, they also don’t read the World Wide Web.)
Yet, many of us who don’t want to wipe our asses with twigs and leaves are getting roundly sick of the world of pre-packaged culture. Whether you really want to drop off the face of the earth, or whether you’re just sick of paying through the nose for over- hyped crap, it’s still possible to live in a major metropolitan areaósay, New York or San Franciscoóand not have to deal with the Establishment on a day-to-day basis. In fact, in some ways it’s even easier to get lost in the urban jungle than it is in the backwoodsóit just takes a little know-how. Just remember that when you either want to, or are forced to consume something, the choices we make in who we buy it from are as important as what we buy. Sure, you may feel good drinking that all-organic iced tea, but if you just put your hard-earned $5 into the pocket of some multinational that ass-rapes Burmese tea-farmers, who’s coming out ahead?
So, without further ado, here are our suggestions for revolutionary living. ..”